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Old 07-10-2014, 10:55   #76
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Re: New Sails! Advice Needed.

Quote:
Originally Posted by UNCIVILIZED View Post
Error Correction on Flatteners: The ring is placed about a foot above the Clew. Although it might work even better if placed at the same height, but say 8" inboard from the leech so that you get an even better angle of pull on the main's middle aged spread. Though it likely warrant a reinforcing patch, & or webbing fan in it's vicinity.
Interesting -- so not like a Cunningham at all.

Which way does the line pull it? Straight down like a Cunningham? Or out at an angle?
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Old 07-10-2014, 12:11   #77
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Re: New Sails! Advice Needed.

A Flattener pulls at an angle, & when you Really need to get the paunch out of the middle of the sail, it works in conjunction with the outhaul. Your best bet for a longer, & more detailed answer on how they work their magic is to; talk to a sailmaker, a racer, & especially, pick up a couple of books on sail trim (especially racing oriented ones). North Sails has had great stuff for decades running (and it is FAR from just for racers) NORTH U. I'd add more, but the gauge on my sleep meter is WAY in the red.

There are a couple of things which would come in REALLY handy, both on this thread, and in terms of you choosing new sails.
- A list of what sails you currently have, what they're made of, their wind ranges (speed & angle), & their condition (pros & cons included).
- A Sail Usage Chart. AKA a gridded list of what sails you fly & when (in conjunction with what other sails) essentially like Evan & Beth have done Sail Combinations
Including wind ranges for everything - speeds & angles, plus sea states.

They're a BIG help in identifying where the holes are in your sail inventory. Meaning for what wind angles & speeds you're really lacking in canvas for.
Also, they're a KEY reference for anyone new who walks onto the boat to be able to know what is best to fly when. Including any special notes on how to set up sail X for specific conditions & combinations.
AND, they're also useful as a tool to tell you what sail(s) to have prepped/on standby, if not on deck, for when current (wind, & weather) conditions shift to X, or Y, or you change course to Z.

On anything I sail on with any frequency, I STRONGLY try & get waterproofed copies posted; on the Nav station bulkhead, below the port & starboard deck instruments (at the trim stations), & on the wheel's pedestal.

They're an old idea (not mine), cheap to free, & help everyone onboard. I think that we used'em when I was at Annapolis, & that I also both heard of them live, plus read about them via Gary Jobson. More than likely in here http://www.amazon.com/Championship-T...ds=gary+jobson although I can't be sure, as my sailing library's not at hand right now.

Also, especially when compared with a ship's log, they let you know when sail or sail combo X really is starting to fade. As you can't point as high, weather helm's up, you're heeling more, or speed's down...

On your main, are your battens tapered? And is there any chance of retrofitting it with longer, tapered ones? Were it a main of the slab reefing sort, one of the traditional fixes for the middle aged spread is to go to full length battens, is why I ask. But yes, by all means, hang onto it.
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Old 07-10-2014, 12:26   #78
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Quote:
Originally Posted by UNCIVILIZED View Post
A Flattener pulls at an angle, & when you Really need to get the paunch out of the middle of the sail, it works in conjunction with the outhaul. Your best bet for a longer, & more detailed answer on how they work their magic is to; talk to a sailmaker, a racer, & especially, pick up a couple of books on sail trim (especially racing oriented ones). North Sails has had great stuff for decades running (and it is FAR from just for racers) NORTH U. I'd add more, but the gauge on my sleep meter is WAY in the red.

There are a couple of things which would come in REALLY handy, both on this thread, and in terms of you choosing new sails.
- A list of what sails you currently have, what they're made of, their wind ranges (speed & angle), & their condition (pros & cons included).
- A Sail Usage Chart. AKA a gridded list of what sails you fly & when (in conjunction with what other sails) essentially like Evan & Beth have done Sail Combinations
Including wind ranges for everything - speeds & angles, plus sea states.

They're a BIG help in identifying where the holes are in your sail inventory. Meaning for what wind angles & speeds you're really lacking in canvas for.
Also, they're a KEY reference for anyone new who walks onto the boat to be able to know what is best to fly when. Including any special notes on how to set up sail X for specific conditions & combinations.
AND, they're also useful as a tool to tell you what sail(s) to have prepped/on standby, if not on deck, for when current (wind, & weather) conditions shift to X, or Y, or you change course to Z.

On anything I sail on with any frequency, I STRONGLY try & get waterproofed copies posted; on the Nav station bulkhead, below the port & starboard deck instruments (at the trim stations), & on the wheel's pedestal.

They're an old idea (not mine), cheap to free, & help everyone onboard. I think that we used'em when I was at Annapolis, & that I also both heard of them live, plus read about them via Gary Jobson. More than likely in here http://www.amazon.com/Championship-T...ds=gary+jobson although I can't be sure, as my sailing library's not at hand right now.

Also, especially when compared with a ship's log, they let you know when sail or sail combo X really is starting to fade. As you can't point as high, weather helm's up, you're heeling more, or speed's down...

On your main, are your battens tapered? And is there any chance of retrofitting it with longer, tapered ones? Were it a main of the slab reefing sort, one of the traditional fixes for the middle aged spread is to go to full length battens, is why I ask. But yes, by all means, hang onto it.
As to the "gridded list is sails I fly" - I had to laugh, as I've got nothing to "grid". I can't even imagine having so many sails that I would need something like this.

I only have the one set of white sails - 120% Yankee jib, furling, self-tacking staysail/storm jib, inmast furling main. Period. And the yankee is shredded, so I am practically a motorboat at the moment.

As to battens - none. I'm thinking about short vertical battens for the new main. I hate the hollow leech of the old one.
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Old 07-10-2014, 12:54   #79
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Re: New Sails! Advice Needed.

Quote:
Originally Posted by UNCIVILIZED View Post
A Flattener pulls at an angle, & when you Really need to get the paunch out of the middle of the sail, it works in conjunction with the outhaul. Your best bet for a longer, & more detailed answer on how they work their magic is to; talk to a sailmaker, a racer, & especially, pick up a couple of books on sail trim (especially racing oriented ones). North Sails has had great stuff for decades running (and it is FAR from just for racers) NORTH U. I'd add more, but the gauge on my sleep meter is WAY in the red.

There are a couple of things which would come in REALLY handy, both on this thread, and in terms of you choosing new sails.
- A list of what sails you currently have, what they're made of, their wind ranges (speed & angle), & their condition (pros & cons included).
- A Sail Usage Chart. AKA a gridded list of what sails you fly & when (in conjunction with what other sails) essentially like Evan & Beth have done Sail Combinations
Including wind ranges for everything - speeds & angles, plus sea states.

They're a BIG help in identifying where the holes are in your sail inventory. Meaning for what wind angles & speeds you're really lacking in canvas for.
Also, they're a KEY reference for anyone new who walks onto the boat to be able to know what is best to fly when. Including any special notes on how to set up sail X for specific conditions & combinations.
AND, they're also useful as a tool to tell you what sail(s) to have prepped/on standby, if not on deck, for when current (wind, & weather) conditions shift to X, or Y, or you change course to Z.

On anything I sail on with any frequency, I STRONGLY try & get waterproofed copies posted; on the Nav station bulkhead, below the port & starboard deck instruments (at the trim stations), & on the wheel's pedestal.

They're an old idea (not mine), cheap to free, & help everyone onboard. I think that we used'em when I was at Annapolis, & that I also both heard of them live, plus read about them via Gary Jobson. More than likely in here Championship Tactics: How Anyone Can Sail Faster, Smarter, and Win Races: Gary L. Jobson, Tom Whidden, Adam Loory, Bill King: 9780312042783: Amazon.com: Books although I can't be sure, as my sailing library's not at hand right now.

Also, especially when compared with a ship's log, they let you know when sail or sail combo X really is starting to fade. As you can't point as high, weather helm's up, you're heeling more, or speed's down...

On your main, are your battens tapered? And is there any chance of retrofitting it with longer, tapered ones? Were it a main of the slab reefing sort, one of the traditional fixes for the middle aged spread is to go to full length battens, is why I ask. But yes, by all means, hang onto it.

The whole flattening reef thing is not a good idea for this boat. It won't work.

Think about it.
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Old 08-10-2014, 01:12   #80
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Re: New Sails! Advice Needed.

savoir, I'm not quite sure I get what you're saying. Could you explain please?
Also, it'd take all of 2 minutes for Dockhead to run the idea past his sailmaker, so I can't see how it'd hurt to check it out. Ditto on inquiring as to whether battens would help some to put a more proper shape back into the sail. I'm not familiar at all with in mast sails, but know that on pretty much any kind of sail I've worked with, battens help sail shape.
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Old 08-10-2014, 06:09   #81
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Quote:
Originally Posted by UNCIVILIZED View Post
savoir, I'm not quite sure I get what you're saying. Could you explain please?
Also, it'd take all of 2 minutes for Dockhead to run the idea past his sailmaker, so I can't see how it'd hurt to check it out. Ditto on inquiring as to whether battens would help some to put a more proper shape back into the sail. I'm not familiar at all with in mast sails, but know that on pretty much any kind of sail I've worked with, battens help sail shape.
The main purpose of battens here is to get rid of the hollow leech. Downside is increased risk of jamming.
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Old 08-10-2014, 22:31   #82
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Re: New Sails! Advice Needed.

The battens do help with sailshape, twist and sail area but can be a problem on some in-mast furlers. They also get a lot of wear and tear going in and out of the slot in the mast so expect to have to do some premature repairs.

Flattering reefs are a old school thing when sailmakers used to put a lot of shape in the foot of the main. Now days loose foot mains don't have any shape that low down, or very little. So a flattening reef doesn't do much!
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Old 18-10-2014, 10:00   #83
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Re: New Sails! Advice Needed.

OK, so here's the latest.

Due to a hot tip from another member on here, given in private, I have been talking to the Sanders loft in Lymington. The owner came over today and measured up my boat, and we drank coffee and talked about sails. Then I drove over the Lymington to have a look at his facility, which is very impressive. He has a lot of the old equipment from Hood, and his loft is the old B&G facility, abandoned when Navico bought the company and stripped all the assets.

I looked at some of their sails and was very impressed.

They really like the new carbon fibers and now hardly use anything else -- they say they are now no more sensitive to flogging than anything else, they are impervious to UV, and are immensely strong and don't stretch.

There two types which he recommends.

One of them is a tri-radial sail which is made up out of panels of laminate. The panels are mylar plus cloth made of alternating carbon and technora yarns, laminated in an autoclave, with taffeta on both sides. This sail, he says, is the most durable, but will be fairly heavy, almost as heavy as Dacron. The carbon/technora cloth comes from Bainbridge and is made in the U.S.

The other sail (which was the choice of the person who recommended this loft to me) is a molded string sail -- a single sheet of mylar with load path carbon and vectran yarns applied by a robot. Glued and heat set, but not autoclaved. With taffeta on both sides.

So the pluses of the string sail are it looks sexier, plus smoother airflow since there are no seams. Minuses include somewhat less durability -- since the lamination is not done in an autoclave under pressure like the other sail. Also the corners of the sail are very stiff because the load path yarns pile up there. But he says racers are getting four years out of them, and he has cruisers with six or seven years with these sails who are only just starting to think about changing them.

He says that in general laminate sail technology has changed vastly in the last few years (is this true?), and that laminate sails are now much more durable and less subject to delamination than they used to be. He doesn't think that there is any sense in using Dacron on boats over 50'.


He can make the mainsail either without battens with a hollow leech, with very short battens and a straight leech, or with full length vertical battens and a bit of roach. The short battens sound like the ticket -- the straight leech performs much better than the awful hollow one (the hugest disadvantage of in-mast furling), the short battens don't create much of a jamming risk. On the negative side is chafe at the batten pockets, but not a big deal -- they say -- if checked every year when the sails are laundered.


The other thing we talked about was a blade jib (subject of another thread I started).

The sailmaker thought this is a great idea (he would, since it would mean another order for him, but what he said seemed to me to make sense). He said there's no way an overlapping yankee will work properly when reefed, even with luff pads. The problem is the sagging forestay (he said). He says a blade will be very easy to trim and that the boat will go upwind like a demon. He thought I could sheet it to my staysail self-tacking track, which is just ahead of the mast, as long as I'm willing to barber haul it around a bit in case I wanted to crack off a little, or if I were sailing in really lumpy seas.

He said that it would greatly extend the life of the yankee if I would use a blade in strong conditions rather than reefing the yankee.

Of course that's not entirely realistic, because getting the immense yankee down and getting it into a bag is a strenuous job for three guys in calm weather at the dock. I can't imagine doing it at sea. So I don't think I'll be able to change back and forth at will. It might be more -- leave the blade up over the winter, put the yankee up in the summer, except when a period of strong weather is forecast.

So I'm not really sure it's worth it -- another carbon fiber laminate sail is not going to be cheap -- but after 3000 miles bashing upwind this summer, it sure is tempting to have a sail made just for the job.
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Old 20-10-2014, 11:53   #84
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Re: New Sails! Advice Needed.

No one? I am particularly interested in whether anyone has any opinions about the molded/string sail versus sewn panels?
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Old 20-10-2014, 13:09   #85
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Re: New Sails! Advice Needed.

Dock,

The newest generation of laminates are vastly superior to the old stuff. But I have no experience with what this guy is selling. I have raced on a J-35 that is still on its 'new' North 3di that was bought in 2007, and which other than some stitching starting to break down looks great. The boat is out 30-40 times a year at least, and as of yet no one really thinks it needs a new main.

I have been of the understandng that carbon sails however don't have this type of lifespan as the individual fibers eventually break. But I can't point to a source on this so...

At the end of the day for serious cruising I would go with the 3di because I know it and the weight and shape advantage over Dacron is substantial. But that isn't to say this guys process isn't just as good as North's.
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Old 20-10-2014, 13:31   #86
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Re: New Sails! Advice Needed.

At this point there are lots of varieties and technologies that are lumped into "molded string sails" so it's hard to universalize. If you look at North's line upwind line you'll see 10 different "models", all of which have different materials and construction. My experience with North's top level 3DL sails (vs. 3Di) is that they are most definitely not as durable as paneled sails (say dacron or dyneema), but they are racing sails. I had a conversation recently with Larry Leonard, who knows a thing or two about sail making, and from his perspective right now molded sails do not approach the durability of paneled sails. I think your choice is going to come down to durability times cost divided by sexiness, or something like that.

If you do any shorthanded sailing, and you do plan on getting a pole, I'll put in a plug for an adjustable whisker pole. One way I have used it is poling out the headsail on long trade wind passages and setting the pole length so that with the headsail can be completely furled with the end of the pole right up against the forestay. This makes dealing with strong squalls a ridiculously easy affair of simply furling in as much sail as you like, up to completely. If you're boat is cutter rigged and the mast is aft a bit, then your yankee is probably fairly large and so may work well with this approach. That said, at 54' your clew will be above your reach height when furled which might present issues.
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Old 20-10-2014, 19:19   #87
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Re: New Sails! Advice Needed.

I think I have the same fabric for the panel sails you are talking about, a product from Bainbridge called carbon fiber grid (CFG) which is a carbon cruising laminate for tri-radial cutting. We have a No1 and No3 I made from this fabric. I actually have a Dacron No2 we cruise with and these other headsails are for when we go in races (like Raja Muda here in Malaysia shortly) and as a backup to the dacron headsail. Unfortunately here in SE Asia All cruising laminates radial or membrane suffer from mildew and de-lamination so it is best not to leave them on the boat (superyachts store there sails in air conditioned rooms).
The membranes/fiberpath sails have improved a lot in the last 3-4 years, and some have 3 year lamination warranty which are the ones you want to go for. The paneled laminated fabric has been good for a lot longer.
If carbon make sure there is no metal contacting the carbon, i.e. eyelets etc, batten box screws need to be titanium etc.
Most world cruising boats your size would be going for high quality wovens rather than laminates, but if your not going anywhere near the tropics then laminates should be okay. Also Vectran is a more durable fiber than carbon. As the fiber is covered by the Taffetas, UV is not a problem for the fiber. What tends to happen is because the taffetas are say 60grms, they fail from UV damage, think very lightweight dacron. So it will fail from UV earlier than a heavy woven cloth.
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Old 21-10-2014, 12:23   #88
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Re: New Sails! Advice Needed.

Quote:
Originally Posted by UNCIVILIZED View Post
savoir, I'm not quite sure I get what you're saying. Could you explain please?
Also, it'd take all of 2 minutes for Dockhead to run the idea past his sailmaker, so I can't see how it'd hurt to check it out. Ditto on inquiring as to whether battens would help some to put a more proper shape back into the sail. I'm not familiar at all with in mast sails, but know that on pretty much any kind of sail I've worked with, battens help sail shape.
I did this -- thanks for the hint.

He said that flattening reefs went out with with hula hoops -- not needed with loose-footed mains.

He said that battens in an in-mast furling main allow the hollow leech to become at least a straight one. Don't do much for shape when they're short, but the leech is huge.
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Old 21-10-2014, 12:27   #89
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Re: New Sails! Advice Needed.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Suijin View Post
At this point there are lots of varieties and technologies that are lumped into "molded string sails" so it's hard to universalize. If you look at North's line upwind line you'll see 10 different "models", all of which have different materials and construction. My experience with North's top level 3DL sails (vs. 3Di) is that they are most definitely not as durable as paneled sails (say dacron or dyneema), but they are racing sails. I had a conversation recently with Larry Leonard, who knows a thing or two about sail making, and from his perspective right now molded sails do not approach the durability of paneled sails. I think your choice is going to come down to durability times cost divided by sexiness, or something like that.

If you do any shorthanded sailing, and you do plan on getting a pole, I'll put in a plug for an adjustable whisker pole. One way I have used it is poling out the headsail on long trade wind passages and setting the pole length so that with the headsail can be completely furled with the end of the pole right up against the forestay. This makes dealing with strong squalls a ridiculously easy affair of simply furling in as much sail as you like, up to completely. If you're boat is cutter rigged and the mast is aft a bit, then your yankee is probably fairly large and so may work well with this approach. That said, at 54' your clew will be above your reach height when furled which might present issues.
Thank you! Useful and interesting advice.
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Old 21-10-2014, 12:50   #90
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Re: New Sails! Advice Needed.

So I have a new proposal from the sailmaker. The prices have been further reduced.

He suggests making a matching staysail (although my existing staysail is still in fine fettle). He also makes a proposal for a blade jib for hard upwind work.

So the questions come down to this --

1. Panel (tri-radial) versus molded string?

2. Is the Blade a good idea? Or a waste of money?
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